Barcelona’s last signing Antoine Griezmann has said that his new teammate Lionel Messi is the best soccer player in the world and the face of the sport.
“For me, he (Messi) is the number one, like Lebron (James) in basketball. They’re the ideal,” the French international forward told Barcelona media on Tuesday, reports Efe news.
“Lebron is the face of the NBA, and for me, Messi is the face of soccer because he has something different that others don’t have. We can only see (such talent) every 30 years or so,” Griezmann added.
Griezmann, the 2018 FIFA World Cup winner with France, also praised the La Liga champion side, saying that “all teams are different from Barcelona at the level of playing style.”
He spoke directly to the club’s fan base as well, reiterating that he intends to entertain the crowd on and off the Camp Nou pitch. “I want to play in front of my new fans,” Griezmann said.
“I believe that they already know me, I’m someone who gives everything on the field and I’m sure we’ll enjoy together.”
Barcelona announced last Friday the signing of the 28-year-old on a five-year deal.
The announcement came after the player’s international representatives paid his $134.6 million buyout clause included in his contract with Atletico Madrid at the La Liga offices.
Atletico said the fee Barcelona had paid at the La Liga headquarters was not enough to cover the total amount of the buyout clause given the deal was struck before it was reduced.